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The Religion is Nasīḥah

Al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Rajab

An explanation of the famous ḥadīth of Tamīm al-Dārī (raḍī Allāhu ʿanhū) concerning naṣīḥah [sincerely desiring that which is good for another].

Types of Naṣīḥah:

  1. Naṣīḥah Towards Allāh
  2. Naṣīḥah for the Book of Allāh
  3. Naṣīḥah towards the Prophet (ﷺ)
  4. Naṣiḥah for the Leaders of the Muslims
  5. Naṣīḥah for the General Populace of Muslims

Abū Ruqayyah Tamīm ibn Aws al-Dārī (may Allāh be please with him) narrated that the Prophet (ﷺ) said:

‘This religion is naṣīḥah [sincerely desiring that which is good for another]. We said: ‘To whom O Messenger of Allāh?’ He said: ‘To Allāh the Exalted in Might, His Book, His Prophet (ﷺ), to the leaders of the believers and to the general populace.’ Narrated by Muslim [1:74]

1. Naṣīḥah Towards Allāh

Al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Rajab [d. 795 AH] narrated from Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī [d. 294 AH] who said:

“As for having naṣīḥah towards Allāh, it is through proclaiming His Oneness, and to describe Him by attributes of perfection and exaltation, and to declare Him above all that it is opposed and contradictory to those attributes. It is to refrain from disobeying Him, and to perform acts of obedience and love for Him with sincerity. It is to love for Him and to hate for Him and to strive against those who disbelieve in him. It is to perform actions that have that effect, to call others towards it, and to encourage it.”1

2. Naṣīḥah for the Book of Allāh

Al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Rajab [d. 795 AH] narrated from Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī [d. 294 AH] who said:

“As for having naṣīḥah for the book of Allāh, it is to have intense love for it and to raise its station and value, for it is the words of the Creator [Himself]. It also involves possessing a yearning desire to fully understand it and to pay attention to contemplating [its meaning]. [This is achieved] by pausing during its recitation to seek that which its Master loves to be understood from its meanings. Then, to execute what is understood from it. For truly the one who sincerely desires good will seek to understand the advice being imparted to him, such that if he should happen upon a book from [his close advisor] he would exert his ability to understand what it contains. Thus he is able to execute what was written to him in it. Likewise is the one who sincerely desires good from the Book of his Lord. He pays attention to understanding what it contains so that he can carry out what he has been ordered with solely for Allāh, in a way that is beloved to Him and is deserving of His pleasure. His love [for Allāh] should drive him to always be studying [His book], thus improving and enhancing his behaviour and mannerisms [in light of it].2

3. Naṣīḥah towards the Prophet (ﷺ)

Al-Hāfiẓ Ibn Rajab [d. 795 AH] narrates from Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī [d. 294] who said:

“As for having naṣīḥah for the Messenger of Allāh (ﷺ) in his life, it is to exert as much effort as possible in being obedient to him, working to make him victorious [over the enemies of Allāh], to cooperate with him, to give him from your wealth if he desires from it, and to hasten towards having love for him. As for after his death, it is to pay care and attention to his sunnah, and to search for his characteristics and mannerisms. It is to glorify the matters related to him and to constantly practise his sunnah. It is to ragefully object against those who choose to practise other than his sunnah. To be angry with those who carelessly ignore [his sunnah] for the attainment of a small piece of this dunyā, even if they are from among the ones who practise the sunnah regularly. It is to have love for the ones who choose the path [of the sunnah] whether they be a close relative, an in-law, or an emigrant. [It is to have love] for all those who defend [the sunnah] or those who had [the honour of] accompanying the Prophet (ﷺ) in Islām,  even if it be for an hour of the day or night. It is also to seek to be similar to him in his clothing and way of dressing.”3

4. Naṣiḥah for the Leaders of the Muslims

Al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Rajab [d. 795 AH] narrated from Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī [d. 294 AH] who said:

“As for naṣīḥah for the leaders of the Muslims, it is to love that they be righteous, rightly-guided, just, and to love that the Muslim ummah unites under them, and to hate the division of this ummah concerning them. It is to be obedient to them in that which is considered obedience to Allāh, and to detest the ones who attempt to overthrow them [through riots, protests, and demonstrations]. It is to love that they are strengthened in the obedience to Allāh, the Exalted in Might.”4

5. Naṣīḥah for the General Populace of Muslims

Al-Ḥāfiẓ Ibn Rajab [d. 795 AH] narrated from Muḥammad ibn Naṣr al-Marwazī [d. 294 AH] who said:

“As for having naṣīḥah for the [general populace] of muslims, it is to love for them what you love for yourself and hate for them what you hate for yourself. It is to be compassionate towards them, to be merciful to their youth, respectful to their elders, to have grief for that which saddens them, and to be joyful for that which causes them happiness, even if it something that causes personal harm in this dunyá like the offering of commodities to them for cheaper prices lessening the profit attained from doing business with them. It is to not wish any general harm to befall them. It is to love that they be righteous, to be familiar with them, and to shower them with your blessings, to work to grant them victory over their enemies, and to defend them from anything that harms them or is detestful for them.”5

Endnotes:

1.  Jāmiʿ al-Ulūm wa-al-Ḥikam: 233
2. Jāmiʿ al-ʿUlūm: 231

3. Jāmiʿ al-ʿUlūm wal-Ḥikam: 232
4. Ibid.
5. Ibid.

Translated by: Riyāḍ al-Kanadī

Published: January 29, 2023
Edited: February 18, 2023

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